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A Delta T2 fence for my Craftsman tablesaw

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Project by SimonSKL posted 12-21-2009 05:23 PM 16630 views 8 times favorited 18 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I have a Craftsman TS (model 315.228390) with an original fence that is extremely difficult to adjust. I wanted to upgrade it to a better fence. Incra LS32 was what I had in mind originally but after some more consideration I have to give up that idea simply I don’t have that much room on the right side of my TS and I wasn’t sure the ultra-accuracy was that critical to me.

After reading many positive reviews on the Delta T2 30” (a Biesemeyer clone), I decided that was the right fence for me and the price is definitely a plus. I ordered it from Tool Plus for $155 including shipping. It arrived in good condition in 3 days. I did not realize how heavy the carton was with just 2 steel rails and a fence!

Following many of the good advice given in LJ from various forums, I was able to install the fence successfully. I chose to drill the new holes in the rails as it was much easier than to drill into the TS wings. I got the holes drilled as close to the edge as I could but I still get about 1/8” between the fence and the top of my TS. Fortunately, the aluminum sides of the fence is adjustable (by almost 1/8”) but turning the fence upside down and loosening the nuts inside. I was able to get the gap down to 1/16”.

The fence glides effortlessly on the rails and I had it zeroed in on the scale right at the blade. Once locked, the fence is rock solid. I also like the adjustability of this fence. My old Craftsman fence only allowed me to rip up to 23”, not enough to split a 48” board in half. My new fence now allows me to rip up to 30 3/4”! I have yet to run some test cuts but I am looking forward to putting my upgraded tablesaw to some exciting projects after the holiday.

Thanks for looking!

PS. Thanks to MikeBerry I have added a T-Track on top of the fence following his idea with minor modifications. Here are a few pictures of my fence modification.

http://i667.photobucket.com/albums/vv38/SimonSKL/008-3.jpg

Here is the front of the fence.
http://i667.photobucket.com/albums/vv38/SimonSKL/006-5.jpg

Here is the back of the fence.
http://i667.photobucket.com/albums/vv38/SimonSKL/007-3.jpg

-- Simon, Danville, IL





18 comments so far

View John Stegall's profile

John Stegall

411 posts in 2174 days


#1 posted 12-21-2009 05:41 PM

Good job!

-- jstegall

View ohwoodeye's profile

ohwoodeye

1044 posts in 1811 days


#2 posted 12-21-2009 09:26 PM

I to upgraded to a better fence. I’m sure your going to love it.
Keep making sawdust.

-- Directions are just the Manufacturer's opinion on how something should be assembled. ----Mike, Waukesha, WI

View Mike Gager's profile

Mike Gager

615 posts in 1925 days


#3 posted 12-21-2009 10:13 PM

nice fence but im actually more interested in your above blade dust collection. that appears home made, can you give some more info on how it works?

View SimonSKL's profile

SimonSKL

182 posts in 1897 days


#4 posted 12-21-2009 11:13 PM

Mike,
The dust collection above the blade is nothing fancy, just a homemade hood made of 1/4” plywood coupled to a 4” metal connector then connected to a 4” hose suspended from my garage door rail. You can see the hose is attached to a tee coupler which also connects to my bandsaw. By adjusting the bungee cord length, I can raise of lower the hood to various heights from the top of the tablesaw. See link to the picure.

http://i667.photobucket.com/albums/vv38/SimonSKL/00312.jpg

-- Simon, Danville, IL

View sobarny's profile

sobarny

9 posts in 2371 days


#5 posted 12-22-2009 12:10 AM

Very timely post. I just received my Delta T2 fence and have been debating if I should drill into the table or the rails. You have sold me on the rails. I have the same Craftsman saw and my fence was at least a 1/4” out of square. I would have to bend it over and tighten it down to get it straight. Not good for accurate cuts!! Can’t wait to get it installed.

-- Sean, Brownsburg, IN.

View SimonSKL's profile

SimonSKL

182 posts in 1897 days


#6 posted 12-22-2009 12:21 AM

Sean,
Since you have the same Craftsman saw, you will find out, if you attach the Delta front rail to two of the existing TS holes, the T2 fence will ride about 1/4” above the top of the TS. So your new holes will have to be 1/8” higher than the holes already drilled in the T2 fence. This way you new fence will ride about 1/8” above the top. You only need 4 new holes. I didn’t count the number of the hex bolts that came with the T2 so I drilled six holes. Effort wasted. BTW, the new holes that I drilled were 3/8”, smaller than the holes already drilled in the T2 fence.

-- Simon, Danville, IL

View Beginningwoodworker's profile

Beginningwoodworker

13341 posts in 2331 days


#7 posted 12-22-2009 12:32 AM

Nice improvement!

-- CJIII Future cabinetmaker

View Mean_Dean's profile

Mean_Dean

1470 posts in 1805 days


#8 posted 12-22-2009 03:02 AM

Simon,

I have an older Craftsman TS, much like yours, but without the wings. I’m considering this TS fence, but would it work on a saw without the wings? Or would it work if I built a dedicated TS station?

Thanks much!

-- Dean

View SimonSKL's profile

SimonSKL

182 posts in 1897 days


#9 posted 12-22-2009 03:56 AM

Dean,
The user manual for the T2 fence includes instruction for installing the fence on a Delta 36-729 tablesaw which requires the rail to be attached by only 2 bolts. In your case without the wings, I will imagine it only needs two bolts.

Here is a link to the T2 user manual. Look at page 5.
http://p1.hostingprod.com/@tools-plus.com/manuals/36-T30-manual.pdf

-- Simon, Danville, IL

View Monty Queen's profile

Monty Queen

1585 posts in 1910 days


#10 posted 12-22-2009 06:30 AM

Looks great. I had a old craftsman table saw and i did the same thing and it was a huge improvement. I bought a Delta unisaw from a friend and he had the T2 fence attached to it. I had no room for two saws so, last saturday i stript my craftsman table down, took the motor and the T2 brackets off and took it to the dump. I now have two T2 fences.

-- Monty Q, Columbia, South Carolina.

View Wayne's profile

Wayne

10 posts in 1762 days


#11 posted 12-23-2009 02:56 AM

I bought a Delta rip fence just like yours about a year ago. I also have an old Craftsman 10” contractor’s saw which I bought many years ago. It had the same junk fence and the same problems you were having. I had to clamp it to the table every time I ripped something…what a pain!! Then I installed the new Delta and my whole world changed!! It holds parallel to within 3 to 4 thousandths. I can’t imagine ever needing more accuracy than that. (I wonder why I didn’t buy it sooner). I know you’ll love the results you get. Great choice!!

-- Wayne, Utah,www.waynewerk.com

View renaissance_guy's profile

renaissance_guy

64 posts in 2218 days


#12 posted 01-13-2010 10:25 AM

Thank you. Your report convinced to buy. I just placed my order.

-- Life is about experiences. http://www.laughton.com/paul/paul.html

View houndog's profile

houndog

6 posts in 1540 days


#13 posted 08-05-2010 06:22 PM

I have had this picture on my favorites for a long time,I wanted to ask you what you made throat plate out of,since it looks like you have the same saw I do.Just got the time to install a Delta fence on my saw and a throat plate to replace the metal one on saw is next.PS I used your idea and put peg board an lower part of saw to store push stick on small jigs and commonly used small tools,good idea.Thanks.

View Beginningwoodworker's profile

Beginningwoodworker

13341 posts in 2331 days


#14 posted 12-07-2010 06:54 AM

That looks good!

-- CJIII Future cabinetmaker

View lumberjoke's profile

lumberjoke

10 posts in 1594 days


#15 posted 05-10-2011 11:22 PM

I recommend drilling holes directly into the saw table instead of the rails. I found it to be easier to align. Here’s my writeup on how I did it: http://brandoncroft.com/2011/05/10/upgrading-craftsman-table-saw/

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